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Kanapolis Ride Story

Sheila Garretson
The True meaning of "Endurance Rider" written by Sheila Garretson
The KISS* of Kanopolis Canyon

My riding partner, Linda and I participated in the Kanopolis
Canyon 50 mile ride on June 17th.  Did ya'll know that Kansas
has hills?  Big hills, very big hills, and canyons?  Lots of
canyons.  Well, guess what?  I didn't either.  But they do!!!!
Margie wasn't kidding about this one being a test.  Linda and I
are from the Oklahoma City area and we train on a lot of dirt
roads with gradual hills. So this was a very good training ride
for us.

I'm sure most of you know that we are the newest contenders for
the turtle awards.  I must say that we did not get that award
because there was one other rider behind us!  My horse "Luna"
(non-Arab) thought I had taken leave of my senses. She just knew
that we had already been over this hill and that hill and what's
the point?

She is not competitive at all and just considers that I'm lucky
to be going at this speed!! Thank goodness for "Brother", Linda's
horse.  He sets the pace and Luna follows. This was our 6th 50
on these two horses and really they are getting better!!  From
our view, at the back of the pack, we get to really see the
sights.  How many of you got to see the Bull fight??  We did!!
By the time we got to the big herd of cattle, they just stood
there and looked at us like, "If you want to ride on this road
you are gonna have to moooove us."  So we did.  It looked like
we were splitting the herd as pretty as you please at a cutting. The scenery was spectacular, absolutely beautiful hillsides, great views of the lake, and plenty of water on trail. As a matter of fact it rained all day on Friday and Friday night, so the footing was pretty slippery.  It seemed like Luna and Brother couldn't get any traction.  The canyon trails, thank God, were mostly sandstone so they were OK. A little steep but not slick.  13 miles to a P&R and a ten minute hold.  Then only about 13 miles into camp, boy were those miles long.

The sky was overcast, so that was nice. Linda and I spend a lot
of time riding alone and we sometimes think of songs for the
occasion, and the one that we kept singing was from Smokey and
the Bandit,  "We've got a long way to go and a short time to
get there."  Anyway, we did complete at about 8 minutes till 7pm.
Lots of time to spare, at least 30 minutes.

The vetting was a little different than we are used to.  FEI
rules were in effect.  We had to unsaddle at the 25 mile vet
check, and they were supposed to watch the horses come across
the finish line.  I guess that only applied to the first 20
riders, as a matter of fact.  When we came in the finish line
marker wasn't even up anymore!  That was a little disappointing.
Maybe next year you could leave it up for us?  The ride
management (Robin) did a great job.  We really liked the "Bring
Your Own Completion Award."  There were a lot of neat things,
even when we got ours!  Thanks for having the ride.  I hope
someone does it again.  Next stop Raton N.M..........see you on
the trail.

 Sheila and Luna -  Mountains, what do you mean Mountains?

KISS* - Keep It Simple Stupid

P.S. Could someone please show Margie , what a marijuana plant
looks like?  She missed the field of plants and she rode right
through it!!!!!!! Ha Ha.

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